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  • which wire to use .030 or .035

    New to MIG welding.
    And I am not a professional welder, weld only when I have to on my heavy earth moving equipment.
    Will be welding .025 steel tubing together, with Ironman 230 welder.
    Is it best to grind the edges so there is say 1/16 gap on the edge of the tube being welded to the other tubes face? Or would it not make much difference with MIG welding?

    Which wire to use .030 or .035? Please explain in some detail the differences?
    I have been told by a "expert MIG Welder" that I should use .030 wire because it welds hotter for deeper penetration, like a 5/8 inch water hose with a nozzle attached vs .035 wire a 5/8 inch water hose with out a nozzle attached.

    Would straight CO2 gas work just as fine as a mix 75/25 gas? What difference would there be between the two gases? Please explain in some detail the differences.

    About to order up a Horbart Ironman 230 welder, should work for my needs, up to 1/2 inch steel.

    Getting away from the stick welder.

  • #2
    Please clarify the material thickness. You wrote .025" which is awfully thin, less than 1/32".

    Did you mean .25" which is 1/4" thick?
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    • #3
      That bit you heard from the guy claiming it welds hotter is worthless. You just need to size your wire to the amps you will run on the weld.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by MMW View Post
        Please clarify the material thickness. You wrote .025" which is awfully thin, less than 1/32".

        Did you mean .25" which is 1/4" thick?
        I thought I wrote 1/4 inch .25 inch, did not catch it when a reviewed my post,
        would like a lot of information on my questions.
        Thank you for your time and information

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        • #5
          I run .035 wire in my mm251 for pretty much everything. It runs great down to about 16 gauge. I can go a bit smaller if I want.

          I'd run .035 wire and c25 gas. You can bevel the joints if you want. It would probably help since you are just learning.

          I think the best thing to do is go down to your local steel yard and get some .25" scrap and weld it together and then cut it up and see how it penetrated. Do that for and while to get a hang for the machine and how it runs. In the long run it will pay off.
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          • #6
            well...

            Originally posted by Cgotto6 View Post
            That bit you heard from the guy claiming it welds hotter is worthless. You just need to size your wire to the amps you will run on the weld.
            I would argue larger wire does burn hotter, with more peneration. Take 1/2 steel, .025 vs
            .045, which one would produce a quality weld with one pass? You could not turn the wire speed up fast enough on .025 to do the same as .045. Next take thin exhaust tubing, good luck turning the wire speed and voltage down enough for .045 to be pratical to use. Why....takes x amount of voltages to melt wire, x amount of volts is also to hot for base material.
            I argue this all the time where people try to convince me that .035 is the fit all for all welds.
            Kevin
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            • #7
              I think the phrase "hotter" gets thrown around too much too often. Here's what Lincoln has to say:

              "Electrode Diameter: when welding with two different diameters of the same electrode and at the same current level, generally more penetration is achieved with the smaller diameter electrode than with the larger diameter electrode (see Figure 5). If you look at an end slice of each size wire, the smaller diameter has less cross sectional area than the larger diameter. As the same amount of current flows through each electrode, the concentration or density of current is greater in the smaller diameter electrode than in the larger diameter electrode. As a result of this higher current density, the smaller diameter electrode will have greater weld penetration than the larger diameter electrode. Note however that every electrode diameter has a maximum current density before the welding arc becomes very unstable and erratic. So as current reaches a certain level, it will become necessary to increase the electrode diameter."

              http://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-us...netration.aspx

              But then they are talking about wires of different sizes and the penetration at the point of the arc only.... The difference between .030 and .035 ain't much. You can also change the cone size and current density by simply changing the tip to work distance too. Be really tough for a guy like me to tell any difference in penetration at the point of the arc since I'd likely have the machine tuned different also. Add my wavering CTWD and jerky progression and all the theory is out the door.

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              • #8
                which wire to use .030 or .035

                I agree with Kevin. I run .045 for 1/4" and most of the time I'll just run .045 for 1/8" unless doing a lot of lighter metal with it.
                Greg

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                • #9
                  I definitely don't think that 035 is the end all electrode. For what this guy is doing it seems like a good all around wire. I don't weld over 1/4" much so I just use 035. I also don't weld much that is smaller so I don't step down to 025 wire.

                  If I had a project with .325+ I'd definitely go bigger on the wire. That just isn't what I weld.
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                  A rockcrawler, er money pit, in progress...

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                  • #10
                    which wire to use .030 or .035

                    Yeper elvis, it's not about one wire having more penetration than another. It's about matching wire to metal. Same as matching Rod to metal.
                    1/4" can be welded with .035 or .045, both will work fine, he needs to look at what he will be welding 75% of time and match wire to that.
                    In my shop I mostly weld metal thicker than 1/4" so my go to is .045.
                    Your right it would be foolish to run .045 if your welding lighter metal 75% of day.
                    My phone says -25 deg at local high school this morning. It's gona be a cold one today. Ready for this winter to be over!!!

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Tryagn5 View Post
                      Originally posted by Cgotto6 View Post
                      That bit you heard from the guy claiming it welds hotter is worthless. You just need to size your wire to the amps you will run on the weld.
                      I would argue larger wire does burn hotter, with more peneration. Take 1/2 steel, .025 vs
                      .045, which one would produce a quality weld with one pass? You could not turn the wire speed up fast enough on .025 to do the same as .045. Next take thin exhaust tubing, good luck turning the wire speed and voltage down enough for .045 to be pratical to use. Why....takes x amount of voltages to melt wire, x amount of volts is also to hot for base material.
                      I argue this all the time where people try to convince me that .035 is the fit all for all welds.
                      Kevin
                      I would argue that is a moot point. You are comparing apples to oranges. If you read what I said, you need to size the electrode to the amperage to be run during the required weld. I did not say anything about using .024 to burn a single pass on 1/2" steel. That would be far past the current saturation point of .024, so choosing a larger wire would be required. But his specific question was, when welding quarter inch material for instance, you could use either .030 or .035, since they both would be within range of amps. The sizing of electrodes amperage ranges overlap a bit, so you choose the electrode size that suits your needs best. Burning a pass at 170 amps weld current with .030 is no different than burning a pass with .035, you just run less wfs with the .035.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by burntside bob View Post
                        New to MIG welding.
                        And I am not a professional welder, weld only when I have to on my heavy earth moving equipment.
                        Will be welding .025 steel tubing together, with Ironman 230 welder.
                        Is it best to grind the edges so there is say 1/16 gap on the edge of the tube being welded to the other tubes face? Or would it not make much difference with MIG welding?

                        Which wire to use .030 or .035? Please explain in some detail the differences?
                        I have been told by a "expert MIG Welder" that I should use .030 wire because it welds hotter for deeper penetration, like a 5/8 inch water hose with a nozzle attached vs .035 wire a 5/8 inch water hose with out a nozzle attached.

                        Would straight CO2 gas work just as fine as a mix 75/25 gas? What difference would there be between the two gases? Please explain in some detail the differences.

                        About to order up a Horbart Ironman 230 welder, should work for my needs, up to 1/2 inch steel.

                        Getting away from the stick welder.
                        Any reply to my other questions in the post.
                        It is my understanding from reading these posts that either .030 or .035 will work just fine. Hardly any difference in results correct?

                        What about grinding the edge off the steel tube before welding?

                        Gas 75/25 or 100% CO2 is there a difference in weld strength and pentration of weld with either gas?

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by burntside bob View Post
                          Any reply to my other questions in the post.
                          It is my understanding from reading these posts that either .030 or .035 will work just fine. Hardly any difference in results correct?

                          What about grinding the edge off the steel tube before welding?

                          Gas 75/25 or 100% CO2 is there a difference in weld strength and pentration of weld with either gas?
                          75/25=less splatter, bettar weld appearance. Will need to increase voltage 1-2 volts.

                          100 co2=more slatter, hotter weld, reduced weld appearance.

                          Either .035 or .030.

                          Kevin
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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Sandy View Post
                            I think the phrase "hotter" gets thrown around too much too often. Here's what Lincoln has to say:

                            "Electrode Diameter: when welding with two different diameters of the same electrode and at the same current level, generally more penetration is achieved with the smaller diameter electrode than with the larger diameter electrode (see Figure 5). If you look at an end slice of each size wire, the smaller diameter has less cross sectional area than the larger diameter. As the same amount of current flows through each electrode, the concentration or density of current is greater in the smaller diameter electrode than in the larger diameter electrode. As a result of this higher current density, the smaller diameter electrode will have greater weld penetration than the larger diameter electrode. Note however that every electrode diameter has a maximum current density before the welding arc becomes very unstable and erratic. So as current reaches a certain level, it will become necessary to increase the electrode diameter."

                            http://www.lincolnelectric.com/en-us...netration.aspx

                            But then they are talking about wires of different sizes and the penetration at the point of the arc only.... The difference between .030 and .035 ain't much. You can also change the cone size and current density by simply changing the tip to work distance too. Be really tough for a guy like me to tell any difference in penetration at the point of the arc since I'd likely have the machine tuned different also. Add my wavering CTWD and jerky progression and all the theory is out the door.
                            This is correct, the heat is more concentrated with smaller wire. Generally, I use a .030 wire for 210 and under machines, .035 for 250 class machines (which your 230 is). There are no benefits to going with a .045 wire unless you have at least 300 or 350 amps available. You can look up the tables, both Lincoln and Hobart, with solid wire you will get better disposition rates with .035 on a 250 amp machine.

                            Edit: I have never seen anything yet coming off the Lincoln website that wasn't true.
                            Last edited by JSFAB; 02-20-2015, 12:47 PM.
                            Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by burntside bob View Post
                              New to MIG welding.
                              And I am not a professional welder, weld only when I have to on my heavy earth moving equipment.
                              Will be welding .025 steel tubing together, with Ironman 230 welder.
                              Is it best to grind the edges so there is say 1/16 gap on the edge of the tube being welded to the other tubes face? Or would it not make much difference with MIG welding?

                              Which wire to use .030 or .035? Please explain in some detail the differences?
                              I have been told by a "expert MIG Welder" that I should use .030 wire because it welds hotter for deeper penetration, like a 5/8 inch water hose with a nozzle attached vs .035 wire a 5/8 inch water hose with out a nozzle attached.

                              Would straight CO2 gas work just as fine as a mix 75/25 gas? What difference would there be between the two gases? Please explain in some detail the differences.

                              About to order up a Horbart Ironman 230 welder, should work for my needs, up to 1/2 inch steel.

                              Getting away from the stick welder.
                              Not exactly sure what you mean by "heavy earth moving equipment". I've been welding on these for years, I have 500 amp engine drives, multi process, we can switch back and forth from CC (airarc) and CV (big wire). With wire, I especially like the flux core, gas shielded stuff. I don't screw around on this, I just set everything as high as I can get away with, and weld away. Not sure how an Ironman 230 will fit your needs, unless you have somebody else to do the real heavy duty work, including buildup and hardfacing.

                              Straight CO2 will work better if there is any galvanized, rust, or paint contamination in your weld zone. Even in normal use, you will get a somewhat narrower, deeper penetration profile. It is harder to deal with out of position (read: overhead and uphill vertical), this takes practice. It will also spatter more, but I doubt that matters to a guy moving dirt.

                              Straight CO2 is also far cheaper than any mixed gas.
                              Last edited by JSFAB; 02-20-2015, 01:51 PM.
                              Obviously, I'm just a hack-artist, you shouldn't be listening to anything I say .....

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